David Knights' Weblog

May 22, 2013

Magazine review: Scale Aircraft Modeller Int’l Vol. 19 #4 (April 2013)

I previous announced a number of years ago on this blog that I’ve stopped buying SAMI.  The quality went seriously downhill and I just stopped finding value in it.  However, everyone once in a while I buy an issue just to see if things have changed.  The have.  It has gotten worse.

First, the positive stuff………

Ok, now the bad.  Nearly everything.  Uniformly, the models built for the articles are bad.  Some really bad.  A few examples.   The new Meng G.91 kit is a nice model, but you wouldn’t know it by the photos of the review model.  It is brush painted and I don’t mind that, but it isn’t well done.  The reviewer managed to make a new, state of the art kit, look like a 30 year old Frog kit.  The new Airfix kit of the Vamp is the subject of  one of the centerpiece articles of the issue.  Yet, the historical article doesn’t have much meat to it, and the color profiles aren’t particularly good.  Also, the review buiimld up of the kit is not well done.  There is obvious overspray and other building flaws that make it seem like the model was rushed for this issue.

I won’t be buying SAMI anytime soon.

June 9, 2012

Magazine review: Model Aircraft Monthly Vol. 11 #3 (March 2012)

MAM continues to be the best of the aircraft modeling magazines IMHO.  While it isn’t the MAM of old, when Neil Robinson was editor, it is much better than the declining SAMI.  It might still be better than SAM, but that magazine is coming on strong.

This issue features a nice historical article on the Soviet Far East naval air force in WWII.  It also features a build article on the fairly new 72nd Revell B-17G.  There is also a report from the Nuremberg toy fair with photos of many of the upcoming releases for 2012.

While SAM is coming on strong, I still think that currently MAM is the best value for the money when it comes to aircraft modeling magazines.  I’d like to see MAM have more 72nd content, but then again I’d love it if MAM, or SAM became a totally 72nd focused magazine.  I can hope, can’t I?


February 5, 2011

Magazine review: Scale Aviation Modeller Int’l Vol. 16 #11

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 7:24 am
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SAMI 16/11

If it wasn’t from Mike Grant’s fantastic O-1 build and his article on clear part techniques, this issue wouldn’t be worth buying.  The feature article is on the French MS.406, but the article is only a page, with a page of color sideviews and a set of 48th scale plans.  There is a companion build article on a 32nd scale MS.406..  It is one of the poorest feature articles that SAMI has had, with nothing but the briefest of overviews.  There are a couple of 72nd build review articles, but nothing that stands out.

Other than the Mike Grant article, the only real item of interest is a very nice build article of a conversion of the 32nd scale Revell  Beaufighter to a target tug version.  It is an excellent build.

January 22, 2011

Magazine review: Scale Aviation Modeller Int’l Vol. 16 #12 (Dec 2010)

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 7:58 am
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SAMI Vol 16 #12

Still trying to catch up with my magazine reviews.  This issue is a pretty typical SAMI.  The feature is on the Me-328 rocket bomber project.  For the 72nd modeler, there are reviews of Italeri KC-135, the Special Hobby CAC CA-9 Wirraway. (This last is a kit I really want to pick up.)  There is also the Mike Grant build of a Airfix Mirage F.1  As I have said, the Mike Grant articles are the best thing in the current SAMIs.  I am not a huge fan of Mirages, but I’d ready and learn from any Mike Grant build article.  A good, but not great, issue.

January 18, 2011

Magazine review: Scale Aviation Modeller Int’l Vol.16 #6 June 2010

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 7:44 am
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I’m getting caught up on my backlog of modeling magazine reviews.  This issue of SAMI is from this past summer.  I will admit that, of late, both SAM and SAMI have been disappointing.  However, this issue is one of the better ones, especially for 72nd scale modelers.  The feature article is on the A-7, though given the A-7’s long service life, the article barely scratches the surface of the history of the aircraft.

For the 72nd scale modeler, there are builds of a Hobbyboss TA-7C, Platz RQ-4B Global Hawk drone, a P-47D in Russian markings and a Conversion of a Mi-8 Hip into a later version by noted Soviet aircraft modeler Ken Duffey.  Finally, master modeler Mike Grant builds an Airfix Kingfisher.  These builds of older kits by Mike Grant are one of the things that keeps me buying SAMI.  This is an issue worth having.

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